INTERNATIONAL NEWS: BA eyes shop for Ferris wheel work

LONDON: British Airways is preparing to stage a competitive pitch next month to pick a consumer agency for the London Eye, the millennium Ferris wheel dominating the capital’s skyline.

LONDON: British Airways is preparing to stage a competitive pitch next month to pick a consumer agency for the London Eye, the millennium Ferris wheel dominating the capital’s skyline.

LONDON: British Airways is preparing to stage a competitive pitch

next month to pick a consumer agency for the London Eye, the millennium

Ferris wheel dominating the capital’s skyline.



The successful candidate will report to British Airways media relations

manager Kate Gay, who has been on loan to the Eye for more than a

year.



Despite opening delays and safety concerns, the Eye has largely managed

to avoid negative press coverage. ’We need an agency to handle the

interest generated so far and continue the momentum,’ Gay said. The Eye

has permission to remain in place until 2005, but the airline is hoping

its popularity will ensure that it becomes a permanent fixture on the

Thames.



The positive public response to the Ferris wheel has been a rare PR plus

for British Airways, which has recently been beset by more than its

share of problems. Last month, CEO Robert Ayling resigned following the

release of financials showing a dollars 95 million loss in the final

quarter of 1999.



In a bid to salvage confidence in the company, the airline has hired

Andrew Cahn to fill the newly created post of government and industry

affairs director.



Cahn, who assumes his post in June, joins British Airways from the

European Commission, where he headed VP Neil Kinnock’s private office

for three years. He arrives at a time when the company is about to enter

into sensitive discussions concerning alliances, mergers, landing slots

at US airports and other aspects of competition policy.



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